Wednesday, May 3, 2023

The end of an era


It was time. It's about time. It's time.

In 2010 it was time to begin riding Vespas. The Scoot Commute is what I called it, because, inspired by what I saw so many Parisians doing when I was briefly in Paris in 2008, I decided to commute to work in Montreal on a Vespa.

It all kicked off in the early spring of 2010. I won't go into too much detail on what followed. It's all laid out in minute detail in this journal (blog? I like journal. I don't like that it sounds hoity-toity though. Oh well.). To make things easier there is a link to a chronological list of posts above, or you can click here.

That decision to live more of my life on two wheels affected so many things. I learned to be even more different than in the past. Although, to be honest, I was always different. A lefty, bilingual, raised a Catholic, but married a beloved Jew, disowned by my parents, then forgiven. The list goes on. Commuting sixty kilometres a day on a Vespa in a busy city, rain or shine, in the heat or the cold? That's not 'normal', but...

I made friends. Not in my neighbourhood, like 'normal' people do, but all over the place. In Ontario, in British Columbia, in Pennsylvania, in New York State, in Florida, in Germany. I rode scooters in all those places. I rode a scooter to the Piaggio plant in Pontedera, Italy (to be fair, Italy is not exactly Germany, but I was riding with my German friends, so there's that). Never in my wildest dreams could I have pictured all the joy my Vespas would bring.

Today it's time.

Journeys all have places where experience shifts. Sometimes change is abrupt and jarring. Mostly though, there is a gentle drift, when the dominant theme and a new theme join paths, like ocean currents, unseen, seamless, relentless, eventually drifting apart, each going their own way.

Miata, meet Vespa. David sails off on a dragon red Vespa, and the mid-life-crisis-red Miata (Susan coined that colour) is left behind, and eventually, over time, takes a different path (from David to Marc, and beyond).

Vespa meet Brompton. David pedals off, folding, unfolding, folding, unfolding... and just like a Brompton, the journey must always be unfolding and shifting. Now the dragon red Vespa sits idle, and soon, in a matter of days, it will take a different path (from David, to Adam, and beyond).

A note to Adam.

Adam, my wish for you, is that your new Vespa will light up your life, the way Vespas lit mine.

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The copyright in all text and photographs, except as noted, belongs to David Masse.